DeLonghi portable heater is eco-friendly for your micro-climate needs

While it’s of course always a comfort to be working in a place with air conditioning, there are still times when it might be too cold for you. Or you may sometimes be working outdoors when the weather is a bit too cool / cold for comfort. Not all places have a heater for your convenience so a portable heater may just be the solution. But again, not all portable heaters are actually portable or convenient. This new one from DeLonghi may be the ideal one, and it’s also mindful of the environment.

Designer: Noi Creative for DeLonghi

The DeLonghi Capsule Desk Loop is a personal fan ceramic heater that you can place on your desk or wherever you are working so you can “work or relax in peace.” It has a special air grid design that brings you a convenient airflow speed and distribution when you need that soft warmth for your sedentary activities. The designers call the air grid the Flame pattern which actually creates an illusion of heat and flames from your heating source.

It looks like your typical heater but it’s small enough that you can carry it around with you and it’s also more stylishly designed. It is also more environmentally-friendly than most personal heaters as it uses 50% recycled plastic, a first for a DeLonghi product. It also uses 5.5 times lower energy consumption at just 360W, making it eco-friendly not just in the design but also in its function. It also is not as noisy as normal heaters as it just gives you a quiet 39dB operation so you can really work in peace without an annoying hum in the background.

Having a device that can create your very own micro-climate while working may not be a priority but it is pretty convenient to have especially if you work in places where you can get easily cold. That can solve some of the office arguments that can happen when there’s a mix of people who are either too cold or too warm.

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Portable moka pot lets you get that espresso shot boost while traveling

When I travel to a new place, one of the things that I always want to try out are the local coffee places. However, not all places have really great original beans and not all coffee addict travelers would trust coffee shops especially if there are not a lot of recommended places. So I know some people who are picky with their caffeine fix who actually travel with all sorts of coffee paraphernalia. Of course this adds to their luggage so it’s not always that convenient. So having paraphernalia that’s handy and at the same time gives you that kick that you need is a must.

Designers: Vanshika Singhal and Yashi Jivnani

BrewPin is a portable coffee machine using the moka pot brewing method that was developed as a concept for coffee brand Bialetti. It is meant for those picky travelers that need to have their espresso shot when they want a caffeine boost and there isn’t any local coffee shop that would suit their taste or if there aren’t any coffee shops in general, like in the mountains or in rural areas. It looks like your typical portable coffee tool but it looks like it’s much easier to use.

The bottom part has a silicone cover with power coat and above it, you find the stainless steel water tank. There’s also a funnel filter and a coffee pod tank as well as a perforated plate where the moka magic happens. There’s a borosilicate glass on top where you pour your coffee in and a nozzle to pour the coffee from. Basically you just plug in the BrewPin, let the coffee brew your espresso shot and then flip it, twist off the cup, and enjoy your caffeine boost.

As someone who often complains that the hotel coffee is almost always no good, this can be a great tool to tide me over until I’m able to get to a proper coffee shop. The only downside to this is that you need to plug it in but if they’re able to create something that would harness energy from somewhere else to get that espresso shot, it would be perfect.

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Baby roach mechanical experiment may be your next cute pet (or nightmare)

Some of the most popular (not necessarily best) memes are of people who seem to be brave on the outside but are reduced to screaming messes when faced with a cockroach. We’re talking both men and women here and seeing them freak out over these insects is apparently funny to some people. So this concept for a robotic cockroach may be the stuff of nightmares for some or a fascinating experiment for those who are curious.

Designer: Luis Lopez

Baby X-Roach is a concept or experiment into creating a robotic creature that is usually a source of disgust or fright. In his description of this creature he created, he says that she has a huge and kind heart with her curiosity keeping her alive even if most people don’t see it. It is designed to have a high tech aesthetic even though it is a low poly creation (small number of polygons in 3D computer graphics).

Based on the animations the designer included, the structure of the Baby X-Roach seems to be based on the actual cockroach’s look but with a high tech aesthetic. It may actually look right at home in a Tesla facility as per the creator. It can also be part of the Into the Spiderverse animated universe as it looks like it may be insect cousins with the spider that bit Miles Morales, with its red and black colors and mechanical movements.

This insect doesn’t seem to have any other function except to be a cute, mechanical pet. Well, that is, if you’re not afraid of roaches. If you are, you just might squish it if you see it scurrying across to you, which would be a shame for this baby roach.

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Hydroponic system lets you sustainably grow plants in your space

I am not much of a plant person, in a sense that I unintentionally kill all the plants that are left in my care. But I am also one of those who complain that there are no green things in my immediate line of vision and that it’s contributing to my concrete jungle problems. If there was a way for me to have plants and not have my black thumb affect them, I would probably jump on that. Some have recommended hydroponics to me but I still haven’t actually tried it. This concept for a cultivation system seems pretty interesting.

Designer: LFD

The main product of turf is an energy-harvesting hydroponic product where you can cultivate plants without the usual things that you need with regular plants. You can have it indoors which is good news for those who live in buildings that don’t have balconies (like me). It is able to harvest energy through a built-in sensor that is able to detect ambient noise and touch. So you basically “grow” your plant by touching it and talking to it, with the help of the energy harvesting system and the LED lights.

The packaging is also part of the whole sustainable system as it uses biodegradable styrofoam from mushroom mycelium. The packaging for the seeds that you will plant are also recyclable since it’s made from water-soluble paper so you just put it in water for it to dissolve. The packaging also uses soy ink printing techniques to complete the circular system of turf, from the plants to the packaging to the hydroponic product to the space called Turf Azit to house the entire symbiosis.

Now I’m not sure if I’ll still be able to make the plants live using the turf system but at least I don’t need the traditional tools to take care of plants. Having something naturally green in your space can do wonders for your mental health so I should probably get started on learning about hydroponics and maybe if turf eventually gets made, then I can enjoy having a hydroponic green thumb.

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Pen blooms when pressed as you write down your dreams

While I’m basically a digital person, I turn analog when it comes to my journaling habit. This means I have a lot of tools like notebooks, stickers, washi tapes, and other ephemera to help me journal. But probably my most important “weapons” are my pens. As someone who likes colorful things, I collect different colored (both ink and the pen’s actual color) pens that I can use when I write in my various journals. So whenever I see a new kind of pen, whether it’s the design or the features, I pay attention.

Designer: Seung-Wan Nam

This concept for a pen called Bloomstick is based on the idea that writing down your dreams is an important part in making them come true. So the pen can metaphorically help your dreams to “bloom like flowers” when you write them down on paper using it. The tagline of the product is “click to bloom your dream”. It is basically a pen with a silicone-covered button that when you press it opens to a flower-like shape and turns it into a blooming instrument.

The product renders show different colors available for the pens like green, blue, and pink. The flower part of the pen is white while the “bud” part seems to be of a different color that matches the main, silicone part of the pen. When closed, it looks like just any ordinary pen and you’ll still be able to use it of course but it’s without its blooming design. There doesn’t seem to be any other function that it can do aside from write and look pretty.

As someone who collects pens and who likes flowery, pretty things, this is something I’d probably buy if I see it in a stationery store. Now if it can actually make my handwriting look nicer or make my dreams come true, I’d order it as soon as it hits the market.

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Ergonomic and stylish chair can relieve some pressure from your knees

When looking for a chair that I’ll use for work (a.k.a the chair I’ll be sitting in for around 6 hours), the number one consideration is if it’s comfortable enough. How it’s designed is not so much of a factor when choosing the chair since what’s important is I can work properly while sitting on it. As I get older however, ergonomics is also a factor in choosing a chair especially since hours are spent in that piece of furniture. But what if it looks like an art piece more than a chair?

Designer: Serena Papait

That was my first impression when I saw the Moon Chair design. Like, how in heavens am I going to be comfortable sitting on that? Sure, it looks like an interesting piece of design but it does look like it belongs more in a museum than at my workspace. But the chair is actually created to be functional, ergonomic, and have a pretty unique design, inspired by the idea of infinity.

The chair is shaped to be an infinity symbol and the part where your legs are placed is able to relieve the pressure point on your knees. That is, if you want to place your knees there since you also have the option to just sit on it like a regular chair. You can also rock it so you are in an active sitting position in case you need to be non-static. It is made from polypropylene with neoprene inserts at the contact points. It also has a CATAS EN 1728 certification.

The Moon Chair is available in white, beige, shadow gray, and olive green colors but you can also customize the fabric in case you have a different color preference. I’m still not sure if it’s a chair I’d like at my desk, given that I also have back issues. But I could probably sit on it for a couple of hours if I need some kind of movement while I’m working.

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L’Oreal’s high-tech hair dryer will dry hair faster and use less electricity

How many people does it take to turn on an air dryer? It may sound like the beginning of a joke but actually this is a real question and the answer is around a hundred people make up the team that has created one of the most high-tech hair dryers. But there’s also a surprising twist with this team as it’s actually made of engineers and scientists that used to create drones. Your hair dryer will not fly in the sky but you’re getting something pretty high-tech.

Designer: Zuvi

The Airlight Pro was unveiled last month at the Consumer Electronic Show and is considered a “next-generation hair drying tool” that can be for professional hairdressers, stylists, and ordinary consumers at home. This was developed by L’Oréal in partnership with hardware startup Zuvi. The latter was created by drone engineers and scientists, most of whom came from technology company DJI, so you know that this is definitely a device that comes with good tech. It uses infrared-light technology and wind to have the hair dry faster and also use 31% less energy consumption.

The hair dryer uses a special 17-blade, high=speed motor, and patented infrared technology as well as tungsten-halogen bulbs so that you don’t use excessive heat when drying your hair. This also means that your hair is properly (or naturally) moisturized since the water is dried on the hair surface and the heat will not excessively dry it. Design-wise, it looks like a typical, high-tech hair dryer so there’s nothing really extra special there. But the fact that its technology can dry your hair quicker and still keep it shiny and smooth is the selling point.

The AirLight Pro has a small display in the handheld grip and can also be connected to an app so you can customize the settings depending on your hair type, length, and style. There isn’t a price tag announced yet although they may be looking at something below $400.

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Smart device reminds you to take your meds when you have to

When I was diagnosed with a certain condition a couple of years ago, it also comes with the tedious (and expensive) “habit” of drinking all kinds of medication. While in my head I know I have to drink these meds at certain times of the day, there are still a lot of times that I actually forget. Sure, we can always add reminders on our phones but sometimes we just snooze those reminders. Or that may just be me. But in reality, people still need all kinds of reminders to take their meds.

Designer: Rume Studio

Ownum Pod is a concept for a device that may be the first one with a smart reminder for medication. This isn’t just an app that can give you notifications when it’s time to take your meds. It’s actually a smart device where you can put your medicine bottle in it and then configure the app to give you reminders when to take it. There is a precision scale inside the device so it knows whether or not you took the correct dosage of your pills or tablets.

The pod itself looks like a smartphone or device charger with a space in the middle to put the medicine bottle. It probably has a standard bottle where you can just store your respective medicine in. And if you’re like me that takes several different meds, you can interconnect multiple pods with just one power cable / charging connection. It has a rubber base and is also modular so you can place double or multiple pods together.

The UI and function seems pretty simple based on the product renders, although there wasn’t much explanation or visuals of the connected app. I don’t know if something like this can help discipline someone like me into taking their meds regularly. But having an option like this may be helpful.

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Minimalist desk lamp is a flexible and functional space saver

For people who spend hours (or more than half the day) at their desk, having proper lighting is a major factor for productivity. If the room you’re in doesn’t always have the best lighting, having a proper desk lamp is also important. Sometimes though, lamps can be bulky and take up precious desk space. This concept for a desk lamp solves that problem and also brings a bit of sustainability to the table, so to speak.

Designers: Simone Guglielmetti, Tommasso Rossi, Andrea Tomaciello, Nikia Kirilovs

The Tars desk lamp is a minimalist concept that shouldn’t take up real estate in your work space. That’s because it’s designed to be clipped to the edge of the table so you’ll have space for all the important things you need to do on your desk. The design also makes it more flexible and gives it a wide range of movement so you can easily place the light where you actually need it. You can twist it around and probably also stretch it to a certain extent so it can reach the parts of your space that needs lighting.

Even the controls are pretty minimalist but also easy to use. The interface is on the bottom of the head so it’s easy to reach wherever you’ve placed the light. The circle button is to turn it on and off while the other button is to adjust the light temperature. They’re both edgeless and can be seen from both sides. The designers also said that it’s easy to assemble and disassemble, also keeping in mind the repairability when choosing the materials to create the lamp.

They were able to do a 3D printed model to make sure that all the functionalities that they designed were working. I for one would want to have a desk lamp like this since one of my problems in my home desk is space. As they say on the internet, “shut up and take my money” if this ever goes into production.

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Light stand with webcam can make people more comfortable on video calls

After years of doing video conferencing while we were working or studying remotely, you would think that people have gotten used to using our computers’ and devices’ webcams already. But there are still those that are not used to turning on their cameras to participate in video calls whether for work, school, or personal reasons. It’s something that will probably be around for the foreseeable future so we still need all kinds of video conferencing tools.

Designer: Soohyun Lim, Designer Dot

Seesun is a concept for a webcam and lighting tool that can be utilized by those who are concerned with privacy but also need something to help them out for times when they have no choice but to turn their cameras on. It’s basically a display that can cover the camera if you don’t want to use it but if you need to actually use it, a smiley face will help you become more accustomed to the camera.

When you turn on the camera, you’ll see a countdown to help you prepare for when it begins showing you to whoever it is that you’re meeting with. There is a smiley face on the display that will supposedly help put you at ease and make you stare directly into the camera and make you look more trustworthy. It can also serve as a light stand if your room needs it to give a better video quality. There is also a small remote to help you control the device.

The design basically is that of a light stand but with a web camera on top. The smiley face may actually help in putting people not used to appearing on webcams at ease. As someone so used to video calls, it may not be much of use to me but there are still a lot of people out there who need tools like this to become a video calling pro.

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